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May 9, 2022

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The Future of Integrated Post-Acute Healthcare: Why Partnership with TeamHealth is Key to the Success of Patients’ Continuum of Care

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Founded in 2017, Swenson Healthcare began as a provider practice group dedicated to serving post-acute care patients in the Pacific Northwest. From its inception, Swenson Healthcare’s mission was to ensure that patients received excellent quality care, whether the patient transitioned home or to another facility.

In late 2021, TeamHealth partnered with Swenson Healthcare. This partnership shouldn’t be too surprising, considering Swenson Healthcare’s mission aligns seamlessly with TeamHealth’s post-acute care practice and forges a strong relationship.

The Vision for Swenson Healthcare

About five years ago, I moved to Tacoma, Washington, to enjoy the outdoors. I started a small medical practice in the post-acute environment, which was initially only intended to be a lifestyle practice to provide for the geriatric population. I quickly realized the significant need for a structured approach to post-acute medicine. The focus of Swenson Healthcare was to develop standardization of the variable of outcome of clinical care. We spent time and resources on medical director engagement and reducing the variability in the delivery of post-acute care. Within a year, we received attention and desire to bring this model to other facilities, and over the course of the next four years, we expanded the practice across ten counties in Washington and Oregon. One of the companies that approached us was TeamHealth.

Building a medical practice is personal. It takes many long hours of commitment, sacrifice of time and, in some situations, financial risk, especially as the practice grows. Making the decision to sell a practice is deeply personal for me because I hired and mentored the clinicians who looked to me as their leader. Choosing a partner comes with a responsibility to those clinicians, employees and the business relationships that have developed over the years.

There were several factors that drew me to TeamHealth as a potential partner. The financial strength of the organization was the largest factor that I considered because the long-term goals of Swenson Healthcare were to have a presence in the Northwest and share our best practices with TeamHealth on a national level. It also gave me confidence that we could get through unexpected scenarios like the COVID-19 pandemic and support our clinicians and their families.

In addition to the financial strength and alignment of goals, keeping the clinicians central to the conversations with TeamHealth played a vital role. The clinicians felt as though they could join a larger family with TeamHealth, and they were offered financial and educational resources to help strengthen their practice to continue to give back to their communities.

Promoting the Patients’ Continuum of Care

One of the main goals of this relationship was to promote the entire delivery of care from end-to-end. TeamHealth has the building blocks in place to take the patient from emergency medicine or hospital medicine to post-acute care, but we now have virtual care to support patients in between. This delivery model is extremely thoughtful as we move toward value-based care. We are able to reduce readmission rates and hospital costs because we have connectivity among the delivery of care.

Measuring Success

Although it’s early on in the relationship, TeamHealth has a clear strategy on how to measure the successes and challenges. One of the key elements we focus on is clinician retention. We agree that retaining the clinicians we have is key to sustaining solid relationships in the buildings. Secondly, TeamHealth has developed opportunities to measure employee engagement through various surveys post-acquisition. TeamHealth is also measuring the financial performance of the relationship, which is as important to a seller as it is to a buyer.

Ultimately, what TeamHealth can offer in terms of educational opportunities to our clinicians is unmatched. Whether a clinician be a new graduate, or they come to us with a decade of experience, they can benefit from dedicated clinical educators who ensure they have the tools and training to be successful and provide the best possible care at the bedside.

TeamHealth Post-Acute Care

As post-acute care continues to evolve and expand, find a partner you can trust. TeamHealth offers full-service post-acute clinical practice management for skilled nursing facilities, continuing care retirement communities and assisted living and independent living communities. Learn more about our offerings and get in touch with us.